For many people, myself included, the idea of a flavored vodka conjures images of sickly sweet, headache-inducing drinks. Proving that not all flavored spirits are created equal, however, is Sapling Spirits, with the launch of its new Raspberry and Hibiscus Vodka.
As the first in the brand’s Wonky Fruit series, the vodka uses fruit that would otherwise be discarded for not quite looking the part (Sapling claims that up to 40% of raspberries are rejected by supermarkets for not being “perfect”) to get its vibrant flavor. And, because it uses real fruit as opposed to artificial flavorings, the spirit tastes so much like raspberry that you almost expect to encounter tiny little pips with every sip.
As with every Sapling release, for every bottle of Raspberry and Hibiscus Vodka bought, the brand will plant one tree. While similar schemes have famously fallen by the wayside, Sapling is one of the few who are committed to seeing the endeavor through; each bottle comes with a unique code that tracks where each tree was planted, with projects benefitting local communities in central London and abroad.
“When it comes to sustainable cocktails, especially at home, it can be tough to know where to start … The best thing to do is keep it simple and begin with the little things that don’t require any extra effort on your end,” says Sapling co-founder Ivo Devereux.
“Start by looking for brands that do the work for you: Ones that use sustainable practices and are B Corp accredited have already done loads to reduce the carbon impact of what you are drinking.”
The latest Sapling vodka is incredibly versatile too, and can be used to replace standard vodka in most cocktail recipes. It works brilliantly in a sour with a dash of simple syrup and lemon juice, shake with egg whites, or even as a switch for your usual aperitif in a spritz.
– 75ml prosecco/sparkling wine
– 50ml Sapling Raspberry and Hibiscus Vodka
– 25ml soda water
– Dash of lemon juice (optional)
Fill a wine or rocks glass with ice and pour in the vodka, then the soda (and the lemon juice if you’re using it) and top with sparkling wine. Finish with a lemon wheel or raspberries.